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2023 ...and The Magic goes on!!! A 21st edition to be framed under the banner of great music with good audience participation.

A schedule filled with several important names provided moments of great music, consigning to history perhaps the best edition ever, superior in quality even to that of the 20th. The only downside was the weather, not always "friendly" to the Magic Blues!!

The Producing Team not to be outdone by past editions has pulled a very varied program out of the hat, managing to "mix" big names of the past and present with young up-and-coming musicians, projected toward a sure career if they can confirm the positive impressions left in the valley. 

That there was a great desire for good music was perceived already in Brontallo in an evening dominated by electric guitar with the solid trio of Joe Valeriano and the performance of the likeable LeBurn Maddox, who surprised a bit everyone with a very heterogeneous set, moving with dexterity between Rock, Soul, Reggae and (a little) blues.

In Giumaglio, the 5th edition of the European Blues Night finally conveyed a large number of spectators to the square, who were certainly enthusiastic about the three bands present, with special mention for Muddy What?, a trio capable of proposing an absolutely innovative Blues, thanks also to instrumental and vocal virtuosity, one of the nice surprises of this edition of Magic Blues, as was the previous evening's performance, unfortunately marred by unfavorable weather, of Peter Karp's band enhanced by the ductile slide of Mark Johnson (Delta Moon). The nearly two and a half hour concert rewarded the brave few who braved the bad weather. 

The two evenings in Avegno turned out to be even more interesting than expected. Especially the first one with an excellent program and a very large audience. First thanks to guitarist Patrik Jansson's band, very cohesive with a groovy sound with dark veins and a personal and mature songwriting. Also in fine evidence was keyboardist Erik Harrström. Following with the wonderful voice of Kyla Brox and her gritty band, with an excellent Paul Farr on guitar. The second evening will remain memorable thanks to the quartet flair of Ghalia Volt, an engaging singer like few others. Fun fact: the lead instrument is basically Bert Werbroeck's mouth harmonica, limiting Volt's slide and dobro to painstaking accompaniment work. Good in the opening set were the Valais-based The Blues Mystery.

Cevio's spacious square hosted three evenings with such holy monsters as Colosseum and Motörhead guitarist Phil Campbell with his The Bastard Sons (his children!). Skyrocketing volume, primal guitar playing and aggressive frontman just enough to send the many fans of the parent band into raptures. A very different and younger audience than the "canonical" Magic Blues audience attended the concert. 
More music for Colosseum and Matt Schofield, who fully confirmed their undoubted artistic qualities. To be fair, Colosseum also left the many musicians present at a concert that at first glance some called the best in Magic Blues history, and they may well be right. Still being a niche band and presenting music that is not easy to listen to, surprising the good number of fans present. Marco Zappa with his group of excellent musicians lived up to his reputation.

The organizers and the loyal audience of Vallemaggia Magic Blues did not deserve to close the festival with two days under water. In spite of this, Maggia gave two days of great music, thanks, after the fine opening concert by Lilly Martin's band, to a resounding Tommy Castro, a stellar guitarist who delighted the audience with a very varied set, never banal, with a "Nobel Prize" second half for intensity and emotion. A dynamic mix of Sixties-influenced Blues, a blue-eyed Soul imbued with Memphis and a Rock'n'Roll also unleashed and entertained, for the series you don't deny the models on which you built your music! On Thursday, the two thunderstorms that hit Maggia almost charged the two bands that performed with adrenaline. Marco Marchi and his Mojo Workers performed their repertoire of Blues, Ragtime and Boogie from the 1920s to the 1950s to great effect with their innovative and exciting approach. Finally, Danish singer and guitarist Thorbjørn Risager closed the 2023 edition of Vallemaggia Magic Blues with a wonderful concert capable of moving fluently between Blues, R&B, Rock, Jazz and Soul. Remarkable was the consistency and originality of the music, but above all it was Thorbjørn's voice that sparked critics into all sorts of comparisons with great musicians of the past. Certainly one of the nice surprises of this edition of Magic Blues. 

But we will remember the whole 2023 edition for a long time, waiting for the organizers to unveil the cards for edition number 22. Appointment, then, to Friday, July 12, 2024, in Brontallo.

Final press release

Photo gallery